The Top 5 Marketing Trends for 2023 | Industry Insights | All MKC Content | ANA

The Top 5 Marketing Trends for 2023


It's that time of year when we look into the crystal ball to get insight into trends that will impact the way business is done in the year ahead. From my perspective, I see an exciting trove of classics that when combined with newer iterations of AI and chatbots tech will really drive consumer connection. Let's take a look.

Omnichannel Audience Strategies

Tried and true, omnichannel strategies consistently meet audiences in their moment which is why it leads my list of tactics to embrace. An omnichannel audience strategy enables seamless buyer interaction via each of their preferred channels. It fluidly transports consumers through a brand's website, text messaging, social media, in-person conversations, customer service, chatbots, and more.

Audience strategies demand a versatile, omnichannel approach that guides your buyer throughout their journey, and that journey most likely is anything but linear and one buyer's journey isn't like the next.

The approach your brand takes can't be passive. Effective audience strategists will guide customers like a sherpa leading mountaineers to the summit. In the year ahead, customers will expect brands to be omnichannel enablers for their best experience, no matter what the media they enter from.

Video – Advertising's Medium of Choice (and Consumer's Too!)

As streaming services like Hulu, HBO Max and Netflix offer more tiered services, inclusive of advertising, video advertising will gain more dominance in 2023. This is just one indicator of why industry watchers expect this medium to grow to $93 billion in 2023, representing 57 percent of all display ad spending.

Video advertisers are opting for over-the-top (OTT) services that bypass conventional TV and cable services. Since OTT advertising is digital, it enables the same targeting and accurate measurement as social media platforms and allows brands to reach premium content viewers.

Some advertisers will go further in 2023, making OTT their primary performance marketing channel to build brand awareness. Another perk of OTT advertising is that it's measurable and quantifiable when combined with data visualization platforms.

In a nutshell, videos are enormously popular because they work. It's just plain engaging when done well–consistently holding audience attention longer than static content.

Adding Shoppables to Content

Shoppables have been exploding. As a consumer myself, I appreciate it when it's done well. In the coming year, shoppables will have the potential to build on influencer and brand ambassador marketing. Advertisers will continue to experiment with what works best and those newer to the space will start incorporating shoppables into digital assets, providing a click-through to purchase.

For example, retail brands like Walmart are looking to recipe sites as shoppable applications. Recipe readers will receive prompts from ingredient lists with "add-to-cart" buttons.

Peloton is testing a similar approach to market its line of apparel. For example, while watching a fitness video, viewers could receive a pop-up inviting them to "shop the instructor's look." Those who click through will receive emails itemizing and promoting the instructor's stylish gear. They can then purchase that apparel directly online. And for anyone who's a devotee of Ally Love or Denis Morton, getting their outfits might help with that New Year's fitness resolution.

Well-crafted shoppables have the potential to shorten traditional sales funnels to a one, well-placed, compelling post. All brands should be evaluating their potential.

Expanding Chatbot Marketing

In the year ahead, the virtual assistants to which we've grown accustomed will become even more commonplace. Brands will be finding new ways to apply the technology to conversational marketing.

By the end of next year, more than eight billion voice assistants will be online. They'll be guiding customers through everything from online shopping to banking to travel bookings.

A key advantage of chatbot marketing is it's available on a 24/7 basis. This enables consumers to choose when to make purchases.

Chatbots can also collect more accurate and detailed data, such as customer demographics, contact information and interests. Newer ones like ChatGPT can even write poems and papers in mere seconds. Seriously! Brands can mine that data for strategic analysis and to improve chatbot performance.

Successful brands will take the time to fine tune chatbots regularly to continuously improve customer experiences. This will ensure chatbots correctly interpret the natural language customers use and make interactions increasingly comfortable and conversational.

Adapting to Advertising Without Cookies

In 2023, customers will continue to demand better protection of their online privacy. As a result, cookies will gradually become a thing of the past.

Google received a lot of media attention on this issue when it announced it would phase out third-party tracking cookies on Chrome. They now plan to complete this in the second half of 2024.

Not everyone realized that Firefox and Safari had already done that. Similarly, Apple has been making it easier to opt out of targeted marketing in its mobile operating systems.

Google will be replacing cookies with segmented groups who share similar interests. So, marketers will have to make the effort to adapt to targeting segments instead of specific individuals. Despite initial concerns, phasing out cookies has the potential to benefit most brands in the long run because it will facilitate a more meaningful value exchange with target audiences. For example, if you become part of our loyalty program, and in so doing give first-party data, a brand will give you perks, discounts etc.

Additionally, eliminating third-party cookies will reduce fake traffic and fraud which I like to think we can all agree is a good thing. Like everything worthwhile, this is a process, and we'll all get there.

Adaptability Creates Opportunity

As motivational speaker Garrison Wynn said, "Action and adaptability create opportunity." Here are some principles to keep in mind to create new opportunities for your brand in the year ahead:

  • Be consistent across all omnichannel messaging
  • Remain agile by exploring options like OTT video, chatbots and shoppables
  • Think long-term by enabling customers' strategic goals
  • Focus on your value proposition, tailoring it to market segments or FLoCs
  • Revisit marketing strategies by adapting to customer-preferred channels
  • Look to digital, blending a range of online media
  • Partner with experts when and where it makes sense to better connect with your audience
  • Above all, imagine new ways of doing things!

From where I sit, the more successful the brand, the more value the consumer gets.

The views and opinions expressed are solely those of the contributor and do not necessarily reflect the official position of the ANA or imply endorsement from the ANA.

Vicki Brakl is the SVP of marketing at MNI Targeted Media.